Best VPN for Apple TV and how to set it up

Whether you’re looking for on-demand movies or live TV streaming, an Apple TV is a no-brainer. However, iTunes content varies significantly by nation, and in certain areas, Apple TV may not be available at all. If you transport your Apple TV outside the nation in which your iTunes account and payment method are registered, you risk immediately encountering regional limits on the content you may access.

How to unlock content that is geo-restricted on Apple TV

With a VPN, you can unblock geo-restricted content on your Apple TV. A VPN service, short for Virtual Private Network, encrypts all of a device’s internet traffic and routes it via an intermediate server in the user’s chosen virtual location. Unfortunately, Apple TV does not support VPN software; however, you may install a VPN on the Apple TV’s wireless network. Additional information is included below.

Best VPN for Apple TV

Based on the following criteria, we’ve suggested the best VPN for Apple TV 4, 3, and 1.

  • Servers situated in most countries that support Apple TV.
  • Unlimited bandwidth and high-speed streaming for HD and 4K broadcasts.
  • Rapid and knowledgeable customer service is available if you need assistance with the setup.
  • A robust strategy for privacy protection and an encryption suite.
  • Bonus points if a VPN router with pre-flashed firmware is available for purchase.


NordVPN has a great track record with a variety of streaming services, including Netflix, Hulu, HBO, HBO Go, Sling TV, Amazon Prime Video, and BBC iPlayer. Simply browse the online knowledge base to see whether servers are compatible with particular channels. On a single subscription, you’ll receive a staggering six-simultaneous streaming device connection. There are servers located in several countries, and each server is protected by a powerful 256-bit encryption.

NordVPN has a secure DNS proxy service called SmartDNS that aids in unblocking geo-restricted content. This may be used independently of the main VPN service but requires the VPN app, which means it cannot be setup on a router by itself. Instead, you’ll need to go through the whole VPN setup process on the router.

NordVPN supplies pre-configured DD-WRT routers that come pre-flashed with all the servers necessary to unblock content on your Apple TV. Additionally, the NordVPN knowledge base has various in-depth articles on how to configure an existing VPN-compatible router manually.

VPNs to stay away from while using Apple TV

VPN Book

VPN Book is a no-cost VPN service that provides no-cost OpenVPN configuration files for its server network. The company’s privacy policies are incredibly opaque, and it’s unclear who is behind the service. Not long ago, the hacker group anonymously warned that VPN Book is a law enforcement honeypot. In any case, the VPN servers listed here will be too slow and unreliable to utilize with an Apple TV.


Hola, this is a peer-to-peer proxy service powered by idle bandwidth on customers’ devices. Thus, rather than connecting to a company-owned VPN server, you connect to the computers of other Hola users. Similarly, while you are not using your computer, other people connect to it. This has significant privacy and security ramifications, and Hola has already abused its users. It once kidnapped every user on its network to build a giant botnet, which is then used to launch distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) assaults on websites. If it is not an affront to user trust, we don’t know what is.

How to configure a VPN on Apple TV

Since Apple TVs do not natively allow VPN connections, the next best option is to install the VPN on your home router and then connect the Apple TV to its wi-fi network. How you do this is determined by the firmware of your router and your degree of knowledge. There are two primary configuration options: physical routers and virtual routers.

VPN for Apple TV on a real router

Certain routers offer VPN connections, while others do not. You may access the router dashboard by opening a web browser and entering your IP address at or followed by your login credentials. If you’re unsure of your credentials, contact your ISP, examine your router’s manual, or Google the default username and password for your specific router type.

Once you’ve reached the dashboard, check around for a method for configuring a VPN connection. If no such firmware exists, you may be able to replace it with an open-source variant that does allow VPNs. DD-WRT and Tomato are our two suggestions. We’ve included instructions for configuring DD-WRT here. However, bear in mind that you must use the correct version of firmware for your individual router. If performed incorrectly or with an incompatible firmware version, you risk permanently damaging the router.

If that seems daunting, or if your router is incompatible with Tomato or DD-WRT, try buying a pre-flashed router from your VPN provider. Pre-flashed VPN routers come pre-configured with all of your VPN provider’s servers. NordVPN, ExpressVPN, and IPVanish all provide pre-configured routers, with NordVPN being the best.

VPN for Apple TV through a virtual router

Setting up a VPN on a virtual network is far easier than on a real router, but you will want an extra laptop to get it operating. A virtual router leverages the current hardware on your laptop to create a wireless hotspot for other nearby devices. Your Apple TV may share the laptop’s VPN-protected internet connection by connecting to a VPN and then broadcasting a wifi signal.

DNS proxy

A DNS proxy, or clever DNS, is another alternative for Apple TV customers looking to unlock geo-restricted content. This does not give the same level of protection or online privacy as an encrypted VPN tunnel, but it is sufficient to unblock certain streaming video content providers.

DNS, or domain name system, converts app and website domain names to server IP addresses. When you access a website in your browser, for example, a DNS request is made to a DNS server, which then determines the right IP address for the web server that hosts the page. By default, DNS queries are routed via your ISP’s servers in your home country. Numerous video streaming services examine the origin of DNS queries to determine a user’s location.

The content on these websites may be unblocked by causing your Apple TV to submit DNS queries to a different server in another region. It will not slow down your connection as much as a full-fledged VPN, but it is also not as private or failsafe as a VPN.

Apple TVs provide built-in support for consumers who want to manually configure their DNS servers. The SmartDNS and MediaStreamer features of NordVPN and ExpressVPN are ideal for this since they allow you to utilize the VPN service’s DNS servers independently of the VPN itself.

The following steps describe how to configure DNS servers for Apple TV 4 and later:

  1. Select Settings > Network from the Main menu.
  2. Determine the current state of your network. Manually configure DNS by selecting Configure DNS > Manually configure DNS.
  3. Enter the DNS address for MediaStreamer or your preferred DNS provider. It should consist of a series of digits and decimals.
  4. Choose Done
  5. Restart Apple Television

That concludes our discussion! This strategy is especially advantageous for larger players who rely on CDNs to provide content. However, the degree to which this is effective is dependent on your DNS provider. We propose SmartDNS, which is included with every NordVPN subscription at no additional cost.

Apple TV 3rd generation or older with a smart DNS proxy

Configuring a smart DNS proxy on an earlier Apple TV model is somewhat different than on a later one. To start, you may choose to adjust your location settings.

  1. To do so, go to Settings > iTunes Store > Location.
  2. After selecting the United States or the nation from which you want to unblock content.

Once that’s done, it’s time to set up the DNS servers.

  1. To begin with, go to Settings > General > Network.
  2. Select the network interface that is currently in use: Ethernet or Wi-Fi
  3. Select DNS Configuration > Manual
  4. Enter the DNS address for MediaStreamer or your preferred DNS provider. It should consist of a series of digits and decimals. Confirm using the word Done.
  5. A restart is necessary to apply modifications. Restart the computer by going to Settings > General > Restart.

Take note that depending on the smart DNS proxy service you choose, more steps may be required to register your device’s IP address with the service. Specific configuration procedures vary by service but are often straightforward; just follow the instructions on your VPN provider’s website.

Methodology for evaluating Apple TV VPNs

PrivacyExplore can provide thorough and accurate VPN evaluations, in part because of our stringent assessment procedures. When it comes to Apple TV VPNs, we look at the following:

  • Apps compatible with routers and/or support for manual VPN configuration on a router
  • Customer service and instructions for Apple TV owners that need to configure their router’s VPN.
  • Is it possible to buy a pre-flashed router?
  • Other circumvention mechanisms, such as ExpressVPN’s MediaStreamer, are provided with a VPN.

We do an in-depth analysis of the overall quality and performance of each VPN we suggest. Our testing includes the following:

  • VPN connections are inspected for DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC breaches that might jeopardize the user’s privacy.
  • Speed testing – While connected to servers in North America, Europe, and Asia, the VPN download speed is assessed.
  • Streaming services – Every VPN must be able to safely access popular streaming services from overseas.

PrivacyExplore examines each VPN’s encryption system, logging policy, value for money, and device compatibility in further detail. We only suggest VPNs that we use.

Apple TV: Kodi

Kodi is compatible with Apple TVs 2, 3, and 4. It takes some effort to get the free, open-source home theater software up and running, but it is possible. In this article on how to install Kodi on Apple TV, we’ll demonstrate many possible methods.

We highly advise against utilizing a VPN when running Kodi on any device, whether it’s an Apple TV or another set-top box. This prevents your ISP from surveilling your behavior and restricting your bandwidth. Additionally, a VPN will assist in preventing hackers from launching regular assaults on the Kodi platform.

Countries where Apple TV is available

Apple TV by far provides the greatest features and capabilities to consumers in the United States. For example, the search feature will examine around 98 content sources in the United States. In Canada, which is a distant second, it scans just 36.

Apple TV+ is accessible in the following countries, however content availability varies by region:

Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia. Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Bermuda, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, British Virgin Islands, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Canada, Cape Verde, Cayman Islands, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Estonia, Eswatini, Fiji, Finland, France, Gambia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea-Bissau, Honduras, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Laos, Latvia, Lebanon, Luxembourg, Macau, Malaysia, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia, Moldova, Mongolia, Mozambique, Namibia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger, Norway, Oman, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, St. Kitts and Nevis, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tajikistan,
Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, USA, Venezuela, Vietnam, Zimbabwe

Siri is also limited to the following countries and languages:

  • Australia (English)
  • Austria (German)
  • Brazil (Portuguese)
  • Canada (English, French)
  • Germany (German)
  • France (French)
  • Ireland (English)
  • Japan (Japanese)
  • Mexico (Spanish)
  • Netherlands (Dutch)
  • New Zealand (English)
  • Norway (Norwegian Bokmål)
  • Japan (Japanese)
  • Spain (Spanish)
  • Sweden (Swedish)
  • UK (English)
  • US (English, Spanish)

You can find out what apps, features, and content providers are available in your country on the official Apple website.

VPNs for Apple TV FAQs

Is it possible to utilize a free VPN with Apple TV?

We strongly advise against using any ostensibly free VPN for Apple TV. To begin, the majority of free VPN services demand you to use their applications, which means that setting one up on a real router is out of the question. While configuration files for free OpenVPN servers are available, they are likely too overloaded with other free users to be used for video streaming. There is very certainly a bandwidth or data limitation, which means you will spend a lot of time buffering and may be cut off amid a program.

Additionally, free VPN providers are renowned for collecting personal data from customers as it flows through their servers and then selling it to third-party advertisements. Some introduce tracking cookies or adverts into your web browsers, while others infect your device with malware. Free VPN services are still seeking profit, which they do by selling your privacy to the highest bidder.

Is it possible for me to have two Apple IDs for separate countries?

Yes, you may log out of your Apple ID in one country and establish a new one in another. You may choose any country when creating a new account. It’s worth noting that you’ll want a local billing address and method of payment to make any purchases via Apple. Otherwise, you may choose any address in the nation of your choice. You will have no access to anything saved in the iCloud of your other account.

Can I use Airplay on my Apple TV while connected to a VPN?

It is VPN-dependent. In many circumstances, you may utilize Airplay on your Apple TV without any complications if you use a VPN. If this does not work, check the settings of your VPN for an option to enable local networking. As long as your Apple TV and iPhone/iPad are connected to the same wireless network, this prevents the VPN from limiting access to local devices like printers, wearables, and, yes, your Apple TV. Certain VPNs allow this by default, while others require users to enable it in their settings, and yet others simply do not allow local network traffic.

With a VPN, will Netflix function on my Apple TV?

Yes, if the VPN is likewise capable of unblocking Netflix.

Is it against the law to use a VPN in conjunction with Apple TV?

No, using a VPN with Apple TV is not unlawful.

Certain streaming sites frown upon the use of VPNs to circumvent geographic limitations. While doing so may violate their terms of service due to content licensing constraints, it does not constitute a violation of the law. The majority of streaming sites do not punish VPN users, while a handful do. If you are detected using a VPN to alter your location, your account may be suspended or terminated.

Is AppleTV+ synonymous with the Apple TV?


Apple TV is a physical hardware device akin to a Roku, Chromecast, or Firestick that is manufactured by Apple.

Apple TV+ is Apple’s subscription streaming service, comparable to Netflix, Disney+, and Hulu.

Apple TV+ does not need an Apple TV, and Apple TV+ does not require an Apple TV. A VPN may be utilized with one or all of these methods.

NordVPN is compatible with all versions of Apple TV.

Apple TV does not yet support NordVPN or any other VPN application. Rather, you’ll need to configure it differently:

Configure NordVPN on your wireless router. You’ll need a VPN-capable router firmware, such as TomatoUSB or DD-WRT. This may be a laborious process and will require some technical know-how.
Share the Apple TV’s VPN connection with another device. You may connect your Apple TV to another device that supports VPNs, such as a laptop or phone. Most laptops are capable of broadcasting their wi-fi signals, while most smartphones enable tethering.
Alternatively, use NordVPN’s smart DNS service. You may modify the DNS servers on your Apple TV by going to General > Network > Wi-Fi > Configure DNS > Manual. While smart DNS may not provide the same level of protection as a VPN, it does allow you to access region-locked content.

Does 4K streaming on an Apple TV with a VPN work without buffering?

Yes, the VPN we suggest, should provide enough bandwidth for 4K video streaming. To watch in 4K UHD, you’ll need at least 25 Mbps of download connection. However, keep in mind that your VPN performance may be reduced if you connect to a remote or crowded server. The Apple TV should have enough processing capacity to decode the video in real-time without pausing to buffer.

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